By Tendai Guvamombe
The Passenger Association of Zimbabwe (PAZ) has bemoaned the fact that economy is slowly rattling towards a complete shutdown and negatively impacting the commuting public.
According to PAZ, the question on whether the economy is yet to reach its doldrums or not matters less but the plight of passengers in the public sector is awaiting urgent address.
The association is deeply concerned about fuel scarcity that has rocked the nation an unfortunate position that has put the transport sector in a sorry state.
In a statement issued by PAZ President Tafadzwa Goliati yesterday in the city, the unbearable situation is getting out of hand everyday – a scenario which continues to pose serious challenges to both commuter omnibus operators and commuters.
“As Passengers Association of Zimbabwe we have noted with great concern how the current economic challenges are negatively affecting both commuter omnibus operators and commuters. In fact, the situation has reached its worst scenario where commuters are no longer able to afford high transport costs.”
A survey conducted on Saturday by the Passenger Association of Zimbabwe at different bus termini and pick and drop points in Harare shows that most people and students were walking long distances in search of affordable transport.
“Yesterday we toured various places of Harare and the surrounding area to check on how the public transport was ferrying people and discovered that some people were walking long distances far away from their usual hiking points in search of cheaper transport.”
PAZ appeals to the government to take action as it is concerned about fate of school students whose lives are endangered by hiking private transport.
“We now appeal to the government to take action because right now school students are the most endangered passengers and their safety together with others needs to be secured.”
Meanwhile, during a press conference, President Mnangagwa announced fuel price hikes with effect from Saturday midnight, a move which is likely to negatively affect the transport sector.